Avalanche Fatalities Low Given High Danger - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Avalanche Fatalities Low, Given High Danger

Posted: Updated:
BOZEMAN -

Avalanche experts say on average there are about 40 avalanche fatalities in the United States every year. In Montana, we average about four avalanche fatalities per year.

Montana's only fatal avalanche so far this season happened on New Years Day in the Onion Basin in the Northern Gallatin Range.

A father was out with his son and son's friend snowmobiling when he got caught and buried.

Avalanche expert Doug Chabot said he's surprised there haven't been more fatalities since this season has had the highest avalanche danger conditions since 2009 when seven people died after being caught in slides.

"Everyone got early season snow then that snow sat there and got weak," said Chabot.

In the last ten years, Montana has had 35 avalanche fatalities. Nineteen of those happened in the Gallatin National Forest.

Chabot said it doesn't matter what type of recreating you are doing, the chances of getting caught in a slide all depends on if you are in avalanche terrain.

"Everyone is pretty much equally likely, it's more about managing the terrain," said Chabot.  "If you go into avalanche terrain, you will stand a chance of triggering a slide."

But, Chabot predicts the worst of avalanche season is behind us.

"We'll see the avalanche danger spike with snow storms as they come, but it will also go down pretty quickly," said Chabot. "I do expect to still see avalanches, which will be followed by the storms, but I do not expect to see a wide destruction."

Chabot wants to remind everyone to travel with someone in the backcountry and always have avalanche protection gear, an avalanche transceiver, a shovel and a probe.

Currently, avalanche danger is high in the mountains around Cooke City.

  • NationalMore>>

  • Last ex-city official sentenced in corruption case

    Last ex-city official sentenced in corruption case

    Friday, August 1 2014 6:31 PM EDT2014-08-01 22:31:11 GMT
    The last of seven former city officials involved in a vast corruption case in the tiny city of Bell, California, has been sentenced to a year in jail, most of which he has already served.
    The last of seven former city officials involved in a multimillion-dollar corruption case in the tiny Los Angeles suburb of Bell, California, was sentenced Friday to a year in jail, most of which he has already served.
  • 2 Ebola victims to be treated at Atlanta hospital

    2 Ebola victims to be treated at Atlanta hospital

    Friday, August 1 2014 6:30 PM EDT2014-08-01 22:30:56 GMT
    Federal officials say two American aid workers who contracted Ebola in Africa will be flown into a metro Atlanta military base.
    Two American aid workers infected with the Ebola virus in Africa will be treated at a specialized unit of an Atlanta hospital.
  • Utility to pay Tennessee coal ash victims $27.8M

    Utility to pay Tennessee coal ash victims $27.8M

    Friday, August 1 2014 6:30 PM EDT2014-08-01 22:30:54 GMT
    The nation's largest public utility has agreed to pay $27.8 million to settle claims from Tennessee property owners who suffered damages from a huge spill of toxin-laden coal ash sludge.
    The nation's largest public utility has agreed to pay $27.8 million to settle claims from Tennessee property owners who suffered damages from a huge, 2008 spill of toxin-laden coal ash sludge that drew national...
  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Missing Oregon Woman May be in Washington's San Juan Islands

    Missing Oregon Woman May be in Washington's San Juan Islands

    Friday, August 1 2014 2:47 PM EDT2014-08-01 18:47:27 GMT
    (AP) A Dundee, Oregon, woman who has been missing more than a week may be in Washington's San Juan Islands.
    (AP) A Dundee, Oregon, woman who has been missing more than a week may be in Washington's San Juan Islands.
  • BMX Racing Growing in Bozeman

    BMX Racing Growing in Bozeman

    Thursday, July 31 2014 11:36 PM EDT2014-08-01 03:36:03 GMT
    Often times, families are trying to think of new ways to spend time together.We introduce you to one family who has found a fun, definitely exciting, and a bit daring way to spend time with one another.
    Often times, families are trying to think of new ways to spend time together.We introduce you to one family who has found a fun, definitely exciting, and a bit daring way to spend time with one another.
  • 44 Riverside homes destroyed or damaged in storm

    44 Riverside homes destroyed or damaged in storm

    Thursday, July 24 2014 3:46 PM EDT2014-07-24 19:46:53 GMT
    RIVERSIDE, Wash. - Many families were still at the Red Cross Shelter set up at Riverside High School in Riverside this morning.An afternoon storm destroyed or damaged 44 of their homes and knocked down close to 100 trees in Riverside Village Mobile Home Park.Many residents said the storm looked like a tornado as it swept through their neighborhood.
    RIVERSIDE, Wash. - Many families were still at the Red Cross Shelter set up at Riverside High School in Riverside this morning.An afternoon storm destroyed or damaged 44 of their homes and knocked down close to 100 trees in Riverside Village Mobile Home Park.Many residents said the storm looked like a tornado as it swept through their neighborhood.
  • Bozeman Mayor Responds to Public Meeting's Abrupt End

    Bozeman Mayor Responds to Public Meeting's Abrupt End

    Friday, August 1 2014 12:31 AM EDT2014-08-01 04:31:42 GMT
    A public meeting in Bozeman Wednesday night, updating residents on efforts to mitigate violate organic compounds near the Story Mill Road landfill, ended abruptly after one man began shouting at the Mayor.
    A public meeting in Bozeman Wednesday night, updating residents on efforts to mitigate violate organic compounds near the Story Mill Road landfill, ended abruptly after one man began shouting at the Mayor.
  • Many Frustrated By Stalled Cobell Settlements

    Many Frustrated By Stalled Cobell Settlements

    Wednesday, July 16 2014 9:30 PM EDT2014-07-17 01:30:30 GMT
    In Congress Wednesday, the group in charge of doling out Cobell settlement claims says it's waiting on setting exact amounts and a judge's okay before making the rest of the payments.
    In Congress Wednesday, the group in charge of doling out Cobell settlement claims says it's waiting on setting exact amounts and a judge's okay before making the rest of the payments.
  • Ranch At Rock Creek Makes National List

    Ranch At Rock Creek Makes National List

    Friday, August 1 2014 5:01 PM EDT2014-08-01 21:01:32 GMT
    A luxury ranch right here in Montana is ranked as the most expensive resort in the nation.
    A luxury ranch right here in Montana is ranked as the most expensive resort in the nation.
  • Update: Semi Removed, Lanes Reopen After Chemical Spill Near Bonner

    Update: Semi Removed, Lanes Reopen After Chemical Spill Near Bonner

    Wednesday, July 23 2014 3:22 PM EDT2014-07-23 19:22:36 GMT
    Emergency officials, including health department personnel, are on scene of a semi rollover east of Missoula.
    Emergency officials, including health department personnel, are on scene of a semi rollover east of Missoula.
  • MHP Increases Patrols For Testicle Festival

    MHP Increases Patrols For Testicle Festival

    Thursday, July 31 2014 6:41 PM EDT2014-07-31 22:41:38 GMT
    The 33rd annual Testicle Festival is underway, and officers are bringing in the reinforcements to prevent DUI's.
    The 33rd annual Testicle Festival is underway, and officers are bringing in the reinforcements to prevent DUI's.
Powered by WorldNow

Features

  • More Features
  • Powered by WorldNow
    All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Cowles Montana Media. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.